The Underground Librarian

What cats do before meeting curiosity sellers….

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    • Cooking July 21, 2016
      Simple Platter #2 5-10 fillets of anchovies 1 small baked potato seasoned with butter and pepper 1/4 Fuji apple sliced into thin wedges 10 chilled cherry tomatoes 2 sections of fry bread Side Sauce: Refine smooth in a blender: 1/4 small cucumber sliced into chunks 10 large leaves of fresh basil 10-15 leaves of Italian […]
      Tespid
    • Rules of Crying July 14, 2016
      Rules of Crying Notes III Part 3: 13-16 Boundaries – Taking personal time out to listen to someone’s needs is not an opportunity for a lecture. Do not yell, scream, dictate, demand, or push into the needing individual. Allow them the privilege of a listening ear and space to come to a resolution on their […]
      Tespid
    • Cooking July 7, 2016
      Summer Salad Use whatever you have on hand and chop it into bite sized pieces. Here’s what I used today for a hand blended summer salad: Chop two large chicken tenders into two inch sections set aside. Slice two boiled eggs into quarter sections, set aside. Slice half an avocado into eight sections, set aside. […]
      Tespid
    • Suicide Journal 2016 June 18, 2016
      Rules of Crying (Notes continued)   Do not sexually accost the crying person. Engage in no sexual behavior in your communication. A person seeking your assistance invests in a high level of trust with you. Violating the sanctity of their fragile mind causes more damage and complication to their psyche than I can explain as […]
      Tespid
    • Cooking June 18, 2016
      Basil Librarian Cut two chicken legs at the drumstick, the thigh, and crack the backbone in half under pressure of the knife in the middle. Inspect the meat and cut the pieces clean of dirt, feathers, and freezer burn. Rinse with cold water. In a large frying pan on a medium-low temperature, heat two tablespoons […]
      Tespid
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Cooking

Posted by Tespid on July 20, 2016

Simple Platter #2

5-10 fillets of anchovies

1 small baked potato seasoned with butter and pepper

1/4 Fuji apple sliced into thin wedges

10 chilled cherry tomatoes

2 sections of fry bread

Side Sauce:

Refine smooth in a blender:

1/4 small cucumber sliced into chunks

10 large leaves of fresh basil

10-15 leaves of Italian Oregano

1/2 small onion shredded

1 medium Poblano pepper shredded

1 large clove of garlic

1/2 teaspoon of Kosher salt

1/4 cup of water

1/4 cup of vodka

1-2 tablespoons of olive oil

Note: Use little salt in the potatoes and sauce as the anchovies are very salty.Do not dress the components in the sauce, rather place the sauce in a small dish then add to the plate.

I received a small cash of anchovies and am experimenting with pairings. This was simple and extremely satisfying to the point of pulling me out of the bed last night to feast quelling my late night hunger. Speaking for myself, I cannot eat in this 100 degree heat – even when sheltered in a building with air conditioning. So I am playing it safe with simple meals coupled with fresh bread and herbs. I do want to play with the sauce a bit to tweak the flavor. It is hot. In other incarnations I’ve used wine instead of vodka and dressed the pizza pie in green goodness before adding meat and cheese. No doubt I’ll have something to add before winter settles in.

YF,

W.H. Tespid ERT

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Rules of Crying

Posted by Tespid on July 14, 2016

Rules of Crying Notes III

Part 3: 13-16

  1. Boundaries – Taking personal time out to listen to someone’s needs is not an opportunity for a lecture. Do not yell, scream, dictate, demand, or push into the needing individual. Allow them the privilege of a listening ear and space to come to a resolution on their own or with very little help. When obviously needed, give guidance, but encourage them to resolve the issue within their own power. It is a personal accomplishment to come to a resolve at the behest of their intellect.  Let this time be one for you to give logical and non-violent advice to usher the person into a calmer emotional space to be able to cope with reality.  Do not take their epiphany away from them by telling them what to say or do to resolve personal or interpersonal issues.  As a sounding board, consider the level of involvement you are willing to consider building with this person. You may be trusted to the point that your opinion overrides their security in their emotions. Rather than fostering banter for control and ego, encourage them to trust their instincts.  Encourage them toward self-actualization, independence, and a trust in their own judgment.
  2. Boundaries II – Should you both take the opportunity to talk about boundaries; you will come to understand mutual safety. Without being a mental health professional, it can be difficult to formulate and adhere to ethics for mutual safety when building confidences. Take to heart and mind that sometimes the situation requires a stronger support network. Talk it over between the two of you to find out who else is trusted and can help out of family and friend contacts. Do not hesitate to call law enforcement before being reticent in making an erroneous commitment.
  3. Consider your attachments to holding strict and fast to privacies. You and your confidant may have resulted in your current relationship, but consider if this hinge in privacy issue is destroying the friendship leading to forms of abuse. Both of our safety is important. Call the police even if you are unsure. Remember safety first. If your boundaries are compromised or desecrated, do not hesitate to end the friendship.
  4. The tornado – Driven by multiple impetuses, the individual may be in a whirlwind of emotions that you as a guardian cannot still. Pacing, fidgeting, throwing objects, violent regurgitation, and screaming all push the whirlwind. The tornado draws your attention as much as the individual’s possible stillness and lack of movement. He or she can be a time bomb in abeyance before the tears and rending of garments begin. Take the time to assess your skills to know if you are in over your head. Call 911 and ask for an ambulance. Find an entry point into the fluid motion, secure them next to you on a couch or bench. Then hold them out of love, not restraint. Do not force the situation should this be safe self-expression for them. Acting as a sounding board is worlds apart from negotiating physical cues as a husband, wife, or intimate. Alternatively, let the whirlwind tumble and turn, just watch them carefully, so they do not harm themselves.

©N.A. Jones      2016       All Rights Reserved

W.H. Tespid, ERT

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Cooking

Posted by Tespid on July 7, 2016

Summer Salad

Use whatever you have on hand and chop it into bite sized pieces. Here’s what I used today for a hand blended summer salad:

Chop two large chicken tenders into two inch sections set aside. Slice two boiled eggs into quarter sections, set aside. Slice half an avocado into eight sections, set aside. Chop 1/3 of a Iceburg lettuce head. Slice into thin strips and cut into 2-3 inch sections. Rinse well and place in a large bowl. Rinse 8-10 large leaves of mint in cold water. Slice into strips. Cut in the opposite direction to make boxy shapes. Toss in the bowl with the lettuce. Add three tablespoons of chopped almonds, 1/4 of a cucumber sliced thin, 1/2 a medium onion sliced into strips, 10-15 grape tomatoes. Squeeze the juice of half a lemon over the blend and toss. Place 2 cup of salad in a large wide bowl. Place the avocado in a fan shape at the bottom. Arrange the chicken in a band across the middle of the bowl. Across the top arrange the chicken in a band. Use Hidden Valley Ranch Cilantro Lime for the dressing.

Sweet tea and ice water on the side.

Enjoy,

W.H. Tespid ERT

Note: 1) Use two or three different greens to make the taste pop. Having a clean palette helps for the days you want something light. On that occasion dress the salad with any citrus juice and season with salt and pepper. If you want more body, lightly sprinkle with olive oil and apple cider vinegar, then toss before serving.

2) My favorite trick when making salad is to add in liberally a fresh herb. I use those more suited to culinary arts versus medicinal. Try rosemary, thyme, cilantro, etcetera. I am even apt on occasion to use finely chopped garlic. The point is to learn to balance subtle and heavy flavors instead of dowsing everything in salad dressings. Get to know what food tastes like from as close to the source as possible.

3) Bread a butter sit well with the fare, so feel free to make fry bread or grab a slic eof Mrs. Baird’s best.

4) It is to hot outside to force our digestive systems to do more, so stick to simple fare until the night air is not so claustrophobic.

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Suicide Journal 2016

Posted by Tespid on June 18, 2016

Rules of Crying

(Notes continued)

 

  1. Do not sexually accost the crying person. Engage in no sexual behavior in your communication. A person seeking your assistance invests in a high level of trust with you. Violating the sanctity of their fragile mind causes more damage and complication to their psyche than I can explain as an untrained observer of psychiatric behavior. On any level of conception, this can be termed as rape and an intentional victimization of an innocent. Whether young or old, take a stance to preserve both of your emotional boundaries. Even if this is the only occasion the two of you meet. Take into account the risks of such actions and preserve your sanctity and dignity. References travel long and even far away.
  2. Do not provide medication management unless under a doctor’s care. Help the person through the mania and emotional upheaval by coaching them gently. I have never been a proponent of denying emotions and the additional thoughts that come with working through feelings. The initial venture into processing emotions can be scary and cause suicidal thoughts. Remember though, never to lose sight that the world around us may not reflect our emotional core.  That is another faraway place that we frequently deny and program ourselves never to experience. Exploring the shadow side of the psyche may be in order if not just to find the physical manifestations of emotional cues.

Take care to actively listen and not get lost in the refractions on the windowpane or mocking yourself to play at being a psychiatrist. Do not give any herbal or over the counter drugs to encourage revealing thoughts not normally revealed at a plain level of sobriety and alertness. Encourage them to feel through the moment being patient as words form and fall. All this to maintain and encourage a sobriety that meets reality with clear eyes and an alertness that reflects that both of you are invested in the moment and what is said.

Also, remember to take your time. Do not push and do not interrogate. Said individual may need prompting occasionally, but even if they do not want to talk, maintain your position as a gentle guardian and possible mentor.

  1. Prevent suicide at all cost. Call the authorities and close family members if necessary. Build an action plan formed with mutual considerations. Save a life. Remember to give the situation time. As change is the constant. Your present situation will change. With perseverance, you will find it easier to breathe and develop thankfulness for life in others as well as yourself.

Threats of self-harm are not only felt by the speaker, but are also damaging to the chosen support system.  Suicidal threats are nothing an individual can manage. Do not let it lay as a secret between the two of you. Let those in pain know that you cannot handle the responsibility of their life; authorities and family must be called.

If suicidal thoughts plague the individual, they may ask your help to manage through the difficult times. Listing coping skills and self-care tools that work for them can be the beginning of recovery.  A phone list of people who they can rely upon to listen will help as well.

  1. No alcohol, no drugs, no music. Limiting environmental distractions, mind altering drugs, and mood enhancing influences helps insulate this temporary sanctuary and respite from the world. Complimenting this with sobriety and attentiveness sets the tone to find the core of the issue without interruption.
  2. Encourage verbal mediation. Try not to write or take notes. Treat the time as communication between friends. Do not treat the interaction as a therapy session. He or she may need more emotional support than clinical observation can provide. Let the person “talk/ cry it out”.

Focus most of your attention to being supportive and reflective. Share when you can, but remember this is about them, not you.  Do not try to take the time over by crying, “Oh, poor me” or “I am worse off than you”. Comparison may cause a downward spiral and a complete decimation of trust. Let them talk out their issue. When needed comment back about what you understand them to be saying.  This is useful when asked to be a sounding board. Give opinion, guidance, or mentoring to the occasion as needed. Try not to overload them with scriptural quotes, quips, or popular psychology without explaining the significance to the conversation.

  1. By building a rapport of respect and confidence between the two of you, a sanctuary ensues wherever the two of you meet. This type of interaction is difficult to form. If it is a grounding force between the two of you, take care to keep the confidence for the sake of mutual emotional support. One day your emotional needs may require the same type of care that you provide for others. Maintain contact and concern, as both are difficult to find even with the trustworthy and patient. So if selection brings you to another to build a confidence, remember to saddle your ego and asses your own damage before donning the yoke. Consider if you are getting involved beyond the foundations of your boundaries. Not to forget, trust your instincts.

©N.A. Jones      2016       All Rights Reserved

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Cooking

Posted by Tespid on June 17, 2016

Basil Librarian

Cut two chicken legs at the drumstick, the thigh, and crack the backbone in half under pressure of the knife in the middle. Inspect the meat and cut the pieces clean of dirt, feathers, and freezer burn. Rinse with cold water. In a large frying pan on a medium-low temperature, heat two tablespoons of coconut oil and two tablespoons of peanut oil. Add in two large garlic cloves roughly chopped. Lightly brown the garlic. Meanwhile, using a brown paper bag, dredge the chicken in flour, salt, and a healthy dose of pepper (use no more than 1 teaspoon). Place the chicken in the pan and cook until golden brown on each side. This can take about 10-15 minutes on each side under a lid.

While the chicken is cooking, slice two medium potatoes into thin half rounds, and heat two tablespoons of peanut oil in a frying pan at a medium temperature. Spread the potatoes in the bottom of the pan. Place a lid on top and let the potatoes steam in the oil until soft. Once the potatoes are soft and in a sliced medium sized onion. Turn the fire up to a medium high to brown and crisp the potatoes. Once the potatoes are finished turn the heat off and leave under the lid.

When the chicken is finished set it aside under cover on a plate. Turn the heat down to a low temperature. The pan should retain much of the cooking oil. Roughly chop ten fresh basil leaves and four cups of fresh spinach. Place the vegetable and herb in the pan and stir until wilted. This can take less than five minutes.

Plate simply with one chicken leg and one piece of the thigh. Fill up on the spinach and potatoes. Ice tea is a good pair with the meal as is water. Take care that the garlic aroma and taste is strong. I tend towards using a large amount of garlic in at least one meal a day to take advantage of its medicinal properties conducive to building and preserving a healthy heart.

©N.A. Jones      2016       All Rights Reserved

With Regards,

W.H. Tespid ERT

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Cooking

Posted by Tespid on June 4, 2016

W.H. 23 9:13p.m. May 26 Thursday 2016

Red Bean Dip

1 can red beans (drain, reserve liquid)

2 Tablespoons olive oil

2 Tablespoons tahini

Juice of one lemon

½ teaspoon Kosher Salt

½ teaspoon cumin

¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 teaspoon onion powder

2 large cloves of garlic

¼ cup cold water

Combine all the ingredients into a blender. Temper the taste with the reserved liquid. Serve with fry bread.

June 1, 2016 – Grandma died early this morning

Thursday June 2, 2016    8:20 p.m.

Fry Bread

1 cup flour

1t baking powder

½ teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

1 heaping Tablespoon of Coconut Oil

½ cup cold water

Mix all the ingredients gently. Do not over combine. Chill in the refrigerator for 15 minutes. Heat peanut oil till hot, not smoking. Knead on a floured surface. Cut into quarters. Flatten thin. Poke a hole in the middle then fry till golden brown on each side.

 

Simple Guacamole

Mashed pulp from one avocado

1 Roma tomato chopped fine

1 large garlic clove diced fine

½ large orange squeezed for juice

¼ teaspoon salt

Blend. Chill until serving time.

 

Onion rings

Slice into thin rounds one medium onion. Dredge in flour. Fry until golden brown.

 

Orange Coconut Tilapia

Soak three tilapia fillets in the juice of half a large orange for half an hour.  Remove from the marinade and season both sides with garlic powder, cumin, coriander, and red pepper flakes. Lightly salt. Turn the fillet on both sides in one beaten egg. Lastly coat both sides in coconut flakes mixed with orange zest. Fry in peanut oil on a low temperature. Take care not to fry quickly as the coconut will blacken.

©N.A. Jones      2016       All Rights Reserved.

Notes: During the cooking process, turn the oven on to 200 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a metal pan with a doubled piece of paper towel. Fry the onion first then, place it on the paper towel. Place the pan in the oven between each frying session. Cook the fish second and the fry bread last.

While discussing food and her grandmother, my grandmother said two crates would show up every Christmas season directly from Florida. One was full of oranges and the other coconuts. I planned to use chicken first, but I got side tracked. Either way I am ecstatic about the results.

Set the plates with two pieces of fry bread, two fillets of fish, 2 Tablespoons of bean dip, 2 tablespoons of guacamole, and ½ cup of shredded lettuce. Make fresh limeade to drink. Set salt and pepper to individually season just in case.

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Suicide Journal 2016

Posted by Tespid on May 30, 2016

Rules of Crying

  1. Water for one

Sitting here finding myself again, it remembered mid-morning eight years ago.  I had tears in my eyes while more welled in the corners.  They gathered every few seconds only to fill to the brim of my cheekbone. Then, they slowly careened down my scarred cheeks in groups. I was too tired to care about my appearance. Honestly, what did it matter? I was taking Sabbath for the day with no prospects for community prayer into the night. The bleary-eyed visitor I became was a welcome break to the mundane order of spring’s rainy weeks. Other than the still quiet, I needed to cry more than I can explain. So, I let myself tear, sob, and ache throughout my voice and limbs.  In the plastic covered particleboard chair, I maintained the hour by rocking back and forth in fetal position.  Coming to stillness to breathe every few sobs was a gentle respite upon my throat and lungs. I was more than distraught. Slowly waking to my body, I noticed long strands of mucous draining from my nose. I ambled toward the bathroom to pull tissue from the wall in yards.

I never cry and neither do I react like some well-bred woman to calamity.  The concept of how a gentle woman receives pain into her heart still baffles me. Contrary to the lady of the manor, I was a mess from head to toe. My hair was dry, mottled, and uncombed. Even at this hour, I was wandering around in my pajamas. What I saw reflected in the living room window was a female in her late thirties still playing the girl. I have always had a hard time taking the motivation of pain and tears to action. Self-empowerment escaped me that morning.  All I could do is wallow in sadness. Tears, bitter tears, I cried intermittent through the years while I committed to a double duty of cultural ethics as woman and black. I learned to ignore my handicap of sex and color, along with all of the public presumptions. That morning I saw myself as I was and let every trouble go. Tears bless and expunge the pain for now and for then; well, at least until I stop night prayer midway for forgiveness of youth’s follies and bypass burning anything else before I adjourn to eternity.

I never keep time when I cry. I am not trying to meet a quota of tears each hour; what bothers me is that I lose time. Giving into the process of engendering every drop of brine takes time.  All the while, I take the opportunity to stop my world and get out of the way of myself.  Also stopping myself from being consumed by the larger world and humanity for about just as long as I tear allows time for me to commit to self-care. Without taking the time to stop and respect the healing process, I surely would cripple myself permanently.

Meanwhile that morning, the pain and reason became so obsessive that the brine flowed from eye quarters again. This went on until I was still, staring out into the room. I was trying to get relief from the moment.  Exhaustion weighed me down with another reminder of whom, when, and where,  and as a result turned me inside out.  The sobs and screams perched at the edge of my throat. Then a woman’s voice from behind the outside wall burst through the sheet rock, “Just shut up. Stop crying. You’re screaming for nothing. Stop crying. Crocodile tears all of it. You’re crying nothin’ but crocodile tears.”

It was my second time to cry that year. As I mentioned, for me, crying is difficult, although it has not always been that way.  I welcomed tears since I was a child.  I welcomed even the tears that came without reason. With that day’s emotional break, I had become exhausted. The catharsis from expelling air, heaving lungs, and eschewing clots of phlegm left my limbs weak and my nose dripping. By then confusion had set in and I was on the verge of mania. When was the end of this roller coaster ride? Eventually it was sleep. The sweet calm repose, after all the tension in my head was gone, sleep was sure to put to rest the shaking and the fear. Little did I understand that sleep would not come yet and the little terrors were about to begin.

“Crocodile tears,” she called out every time the flow and emotion would return.

“Crocodile tears,” she began to sing song.

By the fifth time she called out, I just gave up. I did not know what to do. I did not cry until four years later. Moving to another place and another life saved me from the critical harpy. Now, I had new reasons to protect my emotional processes. Protecting any core is hard. Since that woman’s voice, it is almost like there is no water in my head; she cursed it out. Though, what is often left of tears is salt crusts taking of over my crow’s feet by morning light. Even when I rejoice for that acrid dust, I rarely have an argument to cry. I find other ways to deal with the conceptual pain and moral ache that confuses me. Still, when the tears happen, I sit still and let it take over.  For now, where I sit is in a place where I fight and prove self.  The personal red flag is that until now I never needed a reason to prove myself – either I cry or suck it up. Either I am able or not.  Either I defend myself or not. The real revelation is that crying does not make you weaker. On the contrary, it is a gateway to self and sometimes even the shadow side of life.

  1. Water for Two

Tears, the salt, and its’ water is best discussed in context with prayer. This is especially the case when emotions are out of control or privacy is tantamount to living life fully. In retrospect, I understand that I had privileges in youth that matured with age. Responsibility began with keeping confidences since before third grade. As I grew older, the burden stayed on. I became patient learning the applications of discernment because of it. I found that even patience, even in weak friendships, can make for profound trustworthiness when tested. From even then I confess to trials that plumb beyond the depths of my blood and bone. This is not a writ embodying egotists notes, but a mark to the wary that I came by the following  ideas not from the headline of the Monday morning rage, but by discipline and trial.

The lesson of two renewed one early afternoon; my friend needed an ear. She asked me to listen and not be critical. What happened was that time escaped us both. In the resolve, what needed to occur would come in the future. For me, fruit bore then and after the occasion. What follows are notes for what is to become regular practice for care and its discipline for myself.

  • Cold water for two – If you can anticipate, grab water and Kleenex before the tears begin. Water cleanses and prevents dehydration. For both people this can provide an anchor of support so the two of you can concentrate on the problem while preventing a situation for paramedics.
  • Eat food following for two – Blood sugar levels may be extremely low by the time you both find you are exhausted. Take a break and commit to another time. Eat a snack with a follow up plan for a heavier meal later.
  • Never leave the person alone – Do not walk away from your charge. As a caretaker, emphasize reassurance. The person may have issues of abandonment that have never been resolved. If it is necessary to leave, tell the person where you are going and when you will return.
  • Secure the room mentally and emotionally. Create a safe space. – If you need privacy, find or make a space that lends itself to calm or is a sanctuary. Let he or she know that confidences can be kept, but for both of your safety’s sake. If from what is said or what transpires, that the authorities need to be called, make sure call is done immediately following. Remember you may not be a psychiatrist, police officer, doctor, or nurse. Know the ethical and moral boundary lines of profession and personal skill, so as not to catch you in legal or mortal trouble.
  • Provide limited physical support – Hugs and holding hands while tears flow can be excellent to show support and care. However, for your sake as a caretaker or spiritual healer, do not act in the guise of sexual harassment, rape, or molestation. It will ruin you for more than a lifetime. Not only is the confidence between you and the other obliterated, but so it your trustworthiness with others. Trust is a difficult virtue to maintain. If you have it do not lose it; do not encumber it; do not waste it. Nurturing and maintaining trust upon graduating from youth, can form a mighty sword to yield in elder years.
  • Let the person talk and direct the conversation. Try not to interrupt or become critical. This is a time for them to share what they may not have been ever able to do at all. In the least, keep your comments brief and direct.

©N.A. Jones              2016       All Rights Reserved

More to come next week.

~W.H.Tespid ERT

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Education II

Posted by Tespid on May 20, 2016

Learn to silence yourself you young twit.

Quiet down till you hold the wisdom in your bones

Fused and tinged with spit. Bite into that right elbow for God’s sakes, just learn the wisdom that quiet does not forsake. Let the wealthy rail on in ignorance. It tends to young money and its seeming insulation. Hold the wisdom to your generation two down from your waist. Let blood sing and your life not be called a waist, but that too is a secret for another generation down with knowledge of hell not put to waist.

~W.H. Tespid ERT

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Education

Posted by Tespid on May 20, 2016

Sedition and the Wind

When the birds have gone

And the leaves mask the trees’ limbs

Sunlit gone until dawn

Think and speak of other years.

Domestics and familiars to each

Young and old ear.

Say not spot on of the bell,

Lest ye and I rest in hell.

~W.H.Tespid ERT

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Cooking: As requested

Posted by Tespid on May 19, 2016

W.H. 19

Wednesday        May 11, 2016      7:42 p.m.

 

Rice

1 cup Rice (rinsed and scrubbed)

2 Tablespoons Peanut Oil

Lightly brown the rice in the oil. – add 2.5 cup of water – Boil for 5 minutes the reduce to low-medium heat – cook until most of the water is absorbed – cover and turn off the heat.

 

Chicken Gravy

3 cups of water

1 large fried chicken breast (deboned and chopped fine)

1 medium onion (shredded on a grater)

1 medium poblano pepper (shredded fine across a grater)

1 large garlic clove chopped fine

½ teaspoon chicken bouillion

Heat to boil all of the ingredients for 10 minutes. –  Add 1.5 tablespoons of flour, ¼ cup of water, and ¼ cup of the broth blended in a pyrex cup. – Add the flour mixture into the pan. Stir. Thicken. Leave the gravy under seasoned to taste the subtle flavors. Allow the guest to add salt and pepper during serving.

 

Black Beans

1 cup of black beans (pick over for sand, dirt, and stones)

6 pork neck bones

1 large onion chopped

1 large poblano pepper

4 large garlic cloves

6 cups of water

1 teaspoon cumin

1 teaspoon chili powder

½ teaspoon red pepper flakes

½ teaspoon onion powder

½ teaspoon oregano

¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

Place all of the ingredients in the base of the pressure cooker. Cook with 15 pounds of pressure for 30-40 minutes. Let the bean sit to marinate over night. The next day debone the pork neck bones. Add the meat back into the beans. Reheat with 1 teaspoon of cumin, 8 shredded fresh mint leaves, 1 tablespoon of fresh oregano leaves, ½ teaspoon of salt. Lightly boil for 15 minutes.

Presentation: Take one cup of rice and blend with 1 tablespoon of butter, 1 tablespoon of garlic olive oil, salt, pepper, 2 tablespoons of chopped green onions. Pair with ½-1 cup of beans.

 

Peach Pie for Two

Heat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit

 

Crust (Source: Amish Never Fail Pie Crust)

1 cup of flour

¼ +1/8 teaspoon of salt

1/3 cup of shortening (I’ve been using coconut oil or peanut oil)

-Blend in a bowl – Make a well in the center

1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

½ egg

2 Tablespoon of ice water

Pour in the well and mix until the dough gathers in the center. – Roll out dough to a rough circle. – place on a cookie sheet.

Filing

2 peaches cut into 16 sections a piece

½ teaspoon of powdered ginger

¼ teaspoon of nutmeg

¼ +1/8 cup of sugar

1 teaspoon of cornstarch

1-2 Tablespoons of water

Make well in a bowl then pile in the center of the crust. Using more ice water fold the dough over toward the center and secure each side with a brush of ice water before sealing the corner. Do this all the way around the dough. Leave the center open and prick with a fork several times around the pie.

If desired, brush the dough with egg whites. Bake for 30 minutes.

 

Eat hardy and enjoy.

YF,

Pastied Pastry Cook

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Writing

Posted by Tespid on May 17, 2016

>16<

Blood debts in Familial Guise

From my first few steps across the kitchen floor, the three of us had no separation.  Even through the years that followed, others could not help but group our likenesses.  I am older now; one of us passed on through tears, and her daughter is living longer than she did. I am the last, it seems, until I bear child and God only knows when that time will be.

I remember when young, all the banter of our similarities in countenance and dress. The comparison was so overwhelming that I lost my balance and identity those early years.  As I fell down, I grieved for not having my own distinctions and joys to celebrate myself.  What I remember of the end of my independent will is happiness wandering about Grandad’s house while playing the social butterfly to family friends. After forgetting my obligations to act “the little host”, I chose to play hide and seek alone in the back hallway. Remembering home base towered behind the kitchen table; I rounded the closet wall, dashed into the dining room, and landed at the feet of my mother and grandmother. Side by side, they leaned over gazing into my face. In the two, looking as one, I saw the years place themselves side by side.

Similarities became more profound as I grew older. Through high school, I looked at photographs from old albums. I stared at mom, Granma, and me from different joys and family passions. It took years well after college, but I finally saw the wells beneath eyes and curves of hips that would form into what I would look like come age thirty, forty, and eventually fifty-something.

I must tell you, some curves came from my father’s mother. Every time I saw her, once every five to ten years, the curve was her insistence that I looked like her aunt and sister.  The cheekbones were telling. The first time I remember grandmother pinching my cheek and creating a curve with of her palm to bounce beneath the short curls of my hair. That afternoon she claimed me into that side of the family.  That defense of a blood claim became the glue that kept her close in my mind even when the physical distance of family became reality. This was long after my mother’s divorce from my biological father. Truly, when mom and dad where done, someone may have symbolically offered me into the cracks of the judicial system. However, the chill of a filing, divorce does not end the heat of blood relations; it just means a regular switch-up come Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas. It meant I might forget who I am in the milieu. It may mean some topics are silent until long after their divorce or after resolving struggles well into my sixtieth year. Still, know my father’s family speaks my name aloud and claim me as their own. This claiming is as comfortable to my soul as Saturday night homily.

Thanks to grandmother, I know that I did not hatch from an egg. I also know that I am not an orphan. Even the small absurdities and fears from pre-pubescent childhood hold weight and shape. Conquering my lingering fears from then is worthy of a knight’s tale to begin. Still, carving swords and minding the poor calls for a bravery that I just cannot sense in my bones just yet.

II.

What I know now is that belonging comes from blood. Even though DNA is the determination in the science of it all, it cannot be the whole reason behind building our clans around foreign fires. Blood sings of itself in every droplet. Family spirits and distant ancestors dwell there as well. Blood sins make us all libel to an older word and sound of guidance.  For now, knowing blood means not just having my grandfather’s button nose, my father’s hair, or my mother’s gait that shows me I have a place at a larger table. That hum I hear with every cut and bruise calls me to sit and listen to memory.

A problem for me is that mom does not hear it. I wonder if some days I depend too much on her judgment. How do I know? Her reactions upon being questioning for an explanation resonate deep. What I have received is a strange look out of the corner of her eyes. Another issue to consider is that her mother is not alive to ask. As for other relatives, I am staid in the fact that if I have to explain and defend blood song then they are truly without a clue. To correct that failing, I will practice by explaining to you.

A former mentor and I sat on the floor of the living room at her temporary residence.  Conversation was born mostly from her mouth and with every turn of phrase, I was learning new concepts.  After lunch, the casting sunlight in the living room shifted past artwork in reflecting glass and she said looking directly in my face, that blood rings out in sound not just for tonality, but musically.  If the telling starts there, then you know the aroma of blood tells a story of its own.  The story is so distinct that it tells nuances that genealogist could never flesh out with as much accuracy. Mentor said there are those that read blood for histories, heritage, strength, and temperament. Understanding her, she intimated that if we listen with intent and respect we can hear clearly, what graveyards only whisper. However my curiosities, she did not prick my finger, but looked into my flushed face to tell me who my people were and from whence they travelled. After listening intently, I, over 2,000 miles away from my heritage home, became dumbfounded. Doubt faded and I finally conceded to open my ears to let every word fall on my head and heart. Humming is all I remember hearing as I left the house that late afternoon. All the whispers about “the store” doubting mentor’s talent and integrity quickly left my mind.  The time for defending her was over.  Now I knew that her reserve and distance from me in public heeded swells of emotion, knowledge, and wisdom that could only be shared in quiet seclusion.  There was no need of a proving ground or repeated challenges; she moved within her power and no amount of reason could deny that.

As for blood, every drop is important.

Since mentor, I know it is nothing that I can waste.

In my mouth now, are faint tastes of salt.

III.

Jehovah’s witnesses forbid blood transfusions. Mormons may speak of blood sin, blood debt, and blood poisonings and for me they are all too elusive to expand upon.  I thought I read once that the spirit in the blood is unique to us all; it is cannot spilled on the ground or be left for waste. I remained in fear during my youth about having to die because I would have to refuse a blood transfusion. Eventually I took my confusion to task and walked away from that faith out of practicality and survival. Up to the point of leaving, the fear had swelled in my bone. Fleeting visions from memory say I came to hate my blood shortly after the call to womanhood. To me, menses was my enemy. It was not until college where I became determined to subdue the pain, frustration, and burgeoning self-hatred for being female.

The doctor came back into the waiting room to talk to me. The Pap smear was painful and I was not very receptive to anything she had to say. I wanted out- out of the room, out of the office, out of this unsaid contract of being female. Sitting across from the doctor, I hunched over in the chair and began to wring my fingers around my wrists. It was one last attempt for help: so I answered her questions and waited to ask my own. The opening came and I asked her about blood.  I wanted so badly to know why the smell was so bad.  I wanted to know why there was so much blood some nights. Lastly, I cried, “why, oh why won’t the pain leave?” I finally told her that I could not stand the sight of my blood and she backed off. The doctor-patient conversation suddenly ended.  The room turned cold and I drew back into the chair and became quiet. After that, the memory ends.

Years went by before I understood the blessing of blood flow. Cleansing, tuning senses, and childbirth, are but a few of the many accomplishments of womanhood.  In that growth, I carry on that visage of mother, Grandma, and me.  If I ever bear, I know my current and distant histories will read in the blood.  My child will know the reasons for self-rejection and have counseling to meet the rigor of life passages.  I can say with honesty and won reserve that the terrors of youth and their shadows end at the acceptance of a physical body, a dedication to preserve life, and living a bloodline commensurate with its wisdom.

©N.A. Jones      2016       All Rights Reserved

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Cooking:As requested (Addendum)

Posted by Tespid on May 10, 2016

Asian vinaigrette

2 Tablespoons Rice Wine Vinegar

2 Tablespoons Sesame Oil

1 teaspoon Lingham’s hot sauce (Made purely from chilis and cane sugar)

1 teaspoon soy sauce

1/4 teaspoon of Fish Sauce

Option:1/8 cup of water

 

Blend with a few turns of the whisk and enjoy on your favorite salad.

 

Pumpkin Fry Bread

1 cup of flour

1/2 cup pumpkin

1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

1/4 cup of water

2 cups of frying oil

Place all of the pumpkin, ginger, and dry ingredients into a nonreactive bowl. Make a well in the center. Pour in the vinegar and water. With a few good turns of a spatula mix the wet with the dry until just blended.Note: Add a little more water if necessary to blend ingredients. Let the dough sit in the refrigerator for 20 minutes. Heat the oil over a medium flame. Knead gently on a floured surface. Roll thin to 1/4 inch. Cut out circles with a biscuit cutter then press out thinner with your hands. Poke a small hole through the middle and gentle place in the hot oil. Fry till golden brown on each side.

Copyright N.A. Jones 2016 All Rights Reserved

 

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Pa. Journals et alia

Posted by Tespid on May 8, 2016

Marietta man’s drug arrest linked to ‘major’ meth-dealing operation …

lancasteronline.com/…meth…/article_cc8a70be-e9f3-11e5-ab77-5f…
LNP Media Group

Mar 14, 2016 – Officials say they’ve cut off a “major artery” of methamphetamine supply to Lancaster County after arresting a Marietta man with ties to a …

Mexican Cartel is the source for ‘Unprecedented’ Meth Operation at …

fox43.com/…/mexican-cartel-is-the-source-for-unprecedented-meth-operation…
WPMT

Mar 14, 2016 – Mexican Cartel is the source for ‘Unprecedented’ Meth Operation at Marietta Home … Lancaster County Drug Task Force said that the amount of meth is uncommon for Lancaster County. … 2005 S. Queen St. York, PA 17403

WGAL

Jan 16, 2014 – SADSBURY TOWNSHIP, Pa. —State police say they have busted a meth lab operation in Lancaster County and it is connected to another bust …

Marietta man headed to trial for ‘unprecedented’ meth bust – ABC27.com

abc27.com/…/marietta-man-headed-to-trial-for-unprecedented-meth-bust…
WHTM‑TV

Mar 14, 2016 – MARIETTA, Pa. (WHTM) – A Lancaster County man is headed to trial on charges he was running a major methamphetamine-dealing operation …

 

DA: Mexican cartel source of meth operation in Lancaster Co. | WHP

local21news.com/…/da-mexican-cartel-source-of-meth-operation-in-lanc
WHP‑TV 21

Mar 14, 2016 – Investigators in Lancaster County say a Mexican cartel is the source for what the District Attorney’s Office is calling an unprecedented meth bust in one county community.According to the … MARIETTA, Pa. — Investigators in …

Fugitive drug lord ‘El Chapo’ injured while on the run

FOX43.comOct 17, 2015
Guzman broke out of prison through an underground tunnel in July, and has been on the run since then. In a statement Friday, officials said …

NASCAR driver busted in largest tobacco-smuggling ring in North

FOX43.comMar 31, 2016
As part of the investigation, authorities seized more than 1,800 pounds of cocaine, 46 pounds of methamphetamine and 35 pounds of cannabis …

Parents be warned: young teen caught with drugs disguised as candy

WGAL LancasterApr 7, 2016
Parents shocked after methamphetamine disguised as candy was found at a middle school. But what does it look like?

Minion-shaped ecstasy pills found in children’s drawing kit

WGAL LancasterFeb 23, 2016
Chilean authorities also announced a bust in which three colorful backpacks were used to transport a pound of methamphetamine in a false …

How Not to Die of Botulism

The AtlanticDec 3, 2013
After tanking up on “pruno,” a bootleg prison wine, eight maximum-security inmates at the Utah State prison in Salt Lake County tried to shake …

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Cooking: Assignment (Addendum)

Posted by Tespid on May 3, 2016

This was a three part challenge. I will be working on the last part for the remainder of this week. The challenge was fry bread and I took up the whisk without sourcing Native American cooking. Still, I did have inspiration from an Amish “No fail” pie crust recipe.

For now I have not put a dent into the flour jar just yet. From me to you, good eats follow:

Fry Bread

1-cup flour

1-teaspoon baking powder

½-teaspoon salt

2 egg yolks

¼ cup granulated sugar

1/8 cup coconut oil

¼ cup almond milk

2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar

3 Tablespoons ice water

2 egg whites beaten stiff

1-2 cups peanut oil for deep-frying

 

Syrup

(Makes two servings)

1 cup filtered water

½ cup granulated sugar

½-Tablespoon orange zest

2” cube of fresh ginger sliced into thin chips

4 gratings of black pepper

1-teaspoon whole cloves

¼-teaspoon ground nutmeg

Place ingredients for the syrup into one pan. Boil on low temperature until the liquid turns dark brown. Strain out the spices and return to the pot to thicken on low boil. When the syrup begins to thicken turn off the heat. Thin out with a tablespoon or two of water or fruit juice. Set side, but keep warm.

Heat the peanut oil in a heavy pot. Make at least a three inch well of oil. Then, for the bred, blend ½ cup of flour, baking powder, salt, egg yolks, sugar, and coconut oil. Mix to form thick dough. Thin out the dough by adding the almond milk, apple cider vinegar, and water all at once. Add the remaining flour. Fold in the egg whites. Drop into the oil with a 2” ice cream scoop. Fry until golden brown on each side. Serve three to four portions with each plate. Place syrup on the side with two tablespoons of sweetened cream and ¼ of sliced peaches.

©N.A. Jones      2016       All Rights Reserved

Addendum:

Thoughts from the middle of the night:

  1. Substitute graham flour for white flour.
  2. Press 2-3 blackberries into each portion as it fries. Do it in such a way that it is a surprise when the bread is broken open.
  3. Fold in 1/4 cup of organic rose petals with the batter as well as 2-3 drops of attar of roses.
  4. Lightly roast 1/4-1/2 cup of finely chopped pecans tossed with honey. Add to the graham flour batter before deep-frying.

It will be a long hot minute before I can try these ideas. When I do I will give you my take on the taste. Meanwhile, if you are interested, have fun with it.

©N.A. Jones      2016       All Rights Reserved

I just finished a handful of tutorials on leavening courteousy of YouTube.com. The order of mixing ingredients needs to change. I will be starting with egg yolks, sugar, and oil. Then adding the liquids and following up with the flour. Folding in the egg yolks is last.

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Writing

Posted by Tespid on May 2, 2016

Little Red Car

“Little Red Car, go, go, go” slipped out of my mouth as I shifted into third gear. I never gave my 1990 Ford Ranger a name. Since the first month I had Little Red Car, I grew accustomed to calls of “Strawberry Shortcake” every time I slipped out of Bigtown High about fifteen miles away from here.  Before I left the store the man said my truck was no cherry, but the red color and driver still caught an eye to turn.

“Little Red Car, go, go, go,” I whispered and I left home to run errands back in Bigtown High. It was far enough away that I could not take back roads to get to my destination; so, taking the access road to the toll way was an easy option. Coming down the hill, I shifted into third and prayed for the intersection light to stay green. Blessed, I kept cruising until I noticed a companion to my right.   A black bird found the same tailwind I felt careening through the intersection. He kept pace with my Little Red Car as the speed gauge read over forty; as I increased speed, so did he, and the race was on.

Trapped in the lane with one car in front, one truck behind, and another vehicle to my left; I had no choice but to keep pace with traffic. I wanted a fair race, but even I could not resist besting the wind teamed with wings. Quickly I looked in front me and the way opened clear. I would have the crow landing before the race reached the front lawn of the industrial district. Slipping into fourth gear I made a push for fifty miles per hour just to see how fast the bird could go. Before the engine caught the gearshift, crow opened up to a cross wind that took him across the front body of the car and into the grassy median. The shock lasted a moment, but I kept driving.

A former boyfriend told me once not to worry about people driving in my blind spot. “They are not trying to hurt you. It is just that they’re comfortable in your energy field. Don’t worry.” It was the largest irritation to look to my car’s blind sides and not be able to move. With his advice, I learned to get over it. Still, I did not think that animals would be included in that group. Out of curiosity, I wonder if it is worth becoming mindful of what and whom I attract and repel.

©N.A. Jones      2016       All Rights Reserved

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